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January 2024 Magazine Contents

SOS (UK Edition) January 2024

REVIEWS: Yamaha CK61 & CK88 • Korg OpSix SE & Wavestate SE • Vienna Symphonic Library Synchron Duality Strings • RME Fireface UFX III • iZotope Ozone 11 Advanced • UA Lion '68 Super Lead Amp pedal • SPOTLIGHT: Handheld Capacitor Mics • Strymon BigSky & Deco plug-ins • DPA 2017 shotgun mic • McDSP SA-3 • PreSonus Eris Studio 8 monitors • Casio CT-S1000V keyboard • Baby Audio Transit • Lindell Audio LiN2A compressor • PSI Audio AVAA C214 • Extinct Audio BoRbon ribbon mic • Krotos Studio • SR Studio Classic Microphone Preamp • Melda MGuitarArchitect • Intellijel Sealegs • Royer Labs FlexBar • Sonible smart:gate • Heritage Audio LANG PEQ-2 • Black Corporation ISE-NIN synth • Blukac Endless Processor • Waves Scheps Omni Channel 2 • Sample Libraries — and many more reviews!
TECHNIQUES + PEOPLE: Sphere Sound - Creating U2:UV [front cover] • 36 Tips For Budding Engineers & Producers • Kid Harpoon • David Stewart • Why Specifications Matter: Part 1 • How I Got That Sound: Howard Jones • Talkback: Afrodeutsche • DAW Tips: Digital Performer, Cubase Pro, Pro Tools, Studio One... and lots more!

Reviews

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    Audio-Technica 3000 Series

    Wireless In-ear Monitor System

    Licence‑free wireless is fine for smaller shows, but more serious calls for a more serious system.

    Reviews .
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    Baby Audio Transit

    Multi-effects Plug-in

    Transitions are the name of the game here, and as always Baby Audio and Andrew Huang encourage you to get creative!

    Reviews .
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    Black Corporation ISE-NIN

    Analogue Polysynth

    Have Black Corporation managed to capture the spirit of the Jupiter‑8 in a 19‑inch rack?

    Reviews .
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    Blukac Endless Processor

    Eurorack Module

    The Endless Processor from Kyiv‑based Blukac does one thing. It takes a sound and sustains it to infinity.

    Reviews
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    Casio CT-S1000V

    Vocal Synthesis Keyboard

    Lurking within this humble arranger keyboard is a completely new form of synthesis...

    Reviews
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    Crookwood Stereo VU Meter

    Analogue Level Meter

    It’s hard to believe that the humble VU meter has been with us for almost 85 years. How does the Crookwood Stereo VU Meter measure up?

    Reviews
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    Cymasphere

    Chord Generation Software

    Cymasphere aims to make more complex chord construction available to all.

    Reviews
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    DPA 2017

    Shotgun Microphone

    DPA’s new directional mic takes aim at an untapped mid‑level market in location recording kit.

    Reviews
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    Extinct Audio BoRbon

    Ribbon Microphone

    It might not look like a classic ribbon mic, but there’s a lot more to Extinct Audio’s BoRbon than meets the eye.

    Reviews .
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    Fracture Sounds Blueprint: Electric Keys

    Kontakt Instrument

    Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 4/5 Stars

    Reviews
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    Futurephonic Rhythmizer Ultra

    MIDI Plug-in

    Encourage new ideas with some controlled MIDI randomisation.

    Reviews
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    Hugh Robjohns (L) and Paul White (R)

    Gear Of The Year 2023 | Podcast

    Paul and Hugh's favourite gear releases

    Paul White and Hugh Robjohns pick their software and hardware highlights from the last 12 months.

    Reviews
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    Handheld Capacitor Mics

    Spotlight Round-up

    Bring studio sound to the stage with these live‑oriented capacitor microphones.

    Reviews .
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    Heritage Audio LANG PEQ-2

    Inductor EQ

    Although less well known today than the Pultec EQP‑1A, the versatility of LANG’s valve‑less PEQ‑2 won it plenty of admirers.

    Reviews .
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    Heritage Audio LANG PEQ-2 | Audio Examples

    Hear For Yourself

    The audio examples available on this page accompany my review of the LANG PEQ-2 equaliser by Heritage Audio. This recreation...

    Reviews
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    Intellijel Sealegs

    Eurorack Module

    The Sealegs is a reliably useful yet fabulously creative workhorse multi-mode delay module and a more‑than‑worthy sibling for the Rainmaker.

    Reviews
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    iZotope Ozone 11 Advanced

    Mastering Plug-in Suite

    Ozone still offers traditional mastering tools — but its AI‑fuelled options open the door to so much more!

    Reviews .
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    Korg OpSix SE & Wavestate SE

    Synthesizers

    Korg’s Wavestate and OpSix are back, and they’re bigger than ever...

    Reviews .
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    Krotos Studio

    Sound Design Software

    Krotos Studio makes custom sound design accessible to almost anyone.

    Reviews .
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    Lindell Audio LiN2A

    Valve Optical Compressor

    Does Lindell’s LiN2A sound as classy as the famous compressor that inspired it?

    Reviews .
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    McDSP SA-3

    Spectral Processing Plug-in

    The best plug‑ins make under‑the‑hood sophistication simple in practice...

    Reviews
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    Melda MGuitarArchitect

    Amp & Effects Modelling Plug-in

    With up to four parallel chains available, you’re free to design pretty much any amp and effects chain imaginable.

    Reviews .
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    Noise Engineering Xer Mixa

    Eurorack Module

    The Xer Mixa mixer is something of a step out for Noise Engineering, but also takes the LA‑based company back to their roots.

    Reviews
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    PreSonus Eris Studio 8

    Active Monitors

    The Eris series of monitors continues to offer remarkable value for money.

    Reviews
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    PSI Audio AVAA C214

    Active Bass Trap

    Standard low‑frequency acoustic treatment needs a lot of space, but PSI’s active traps fit anywhere.

    Reviews .
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    RME Fireface UFX III

    USB 3 Audio Interface

    Have RME made the perfect USB audio interface?

    Reviews .
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    Royer Labs FlexBar

    Dual Mic Utility Bar

    The FlexBar can make all sorts of dual‑mic placement jobs quick and easy.

    Reviews .
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    Sonible smart:gate

    AI-assisted Noise Gate Plug-in

    Just why would you make the humble noise gate ‘smart’? Sonible asked that question, and this plug‑in answers it!

    Reviews .
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    SR Studio Classic Microphone Preamp

    Two-channel Mic Preamplifier

    We try one of the keenest‑priced 1073 clones currently available.

    Reviews
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    Streamtech Music Iconic Violin

    Kontakt Instrument

    Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 4/5 Stars. Iconic Violin provides a solo violin recorded in a historic church in Heidelberg, Germany and offers a fantastic sustain articulation with legato.

    Reviews
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    Strezov Sampling Afflatus Chapter II: Brass

    Kontakt Instrument

    Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ 4/5 Stars. The tonal characteristics of orchestral brass instruments are notoriously difficult to capture and reproduce in sampled form. Does this library succeed?

    Reviews
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    Strymon BigSky & Deco

    Plug-in Effects

    Strymon’s reputation for making top‑quality digital effects pedals is second to none, but now they’ve made some of their creations available as DAW plug‑ins.

    Reviews
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    Universal Audio Lion ’68 Super Lead Amp

    Guitar-amp & Speaker Modeller

    UA add emulations of three iconic Marshall amps to their acclaimed UAFX amp pedal line‑up.

    Reviews .
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    Universal Audio Lion ’68 Super Lead Amp | Audio Examples

    Hear For Yourself

    These audio examples accompany our review in SOS January 2024 of the Universal Audio UAFX Lion ’68 Super Lead Amp stompbox.

    Reviews
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    Unlikely Stories: The AKG DX11 Reverb Mic

    AKG's 1963 microphone with built-in spring reverb

    The 1960s: a time of sexual revolution, radical politics and microphones with built‑in spring reverbs.

    Reviews
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    Vienna Symphonic Library Synchron Duality Strings

    Sample Library

    The latest Vienna string orchestra offers a unique dual perspective.

    Reviews .
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    Waves Scheps Omni Channel 2

    Channel Strip Plug-in

    This all‑in‑one, five‑module channel strip is based on the sonic characters of the processors and plug‑ins Grammy‑winning mixer Andrew Scheps uses in his studio.

    Reviews
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    Yamaha CK61 & CK88

    Stage Keyboards

    In terms of pure bang for your buck, it doesn’t get much better than Yamaha’s CK keyboards.

    Reviews .
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    Zero-G Ethera Gold Prometheus

    Kontakt Instrument

    Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★ ★ 5/5 Stars. For dramatic male vocals that would grace any fantasy‑style music cue, Ethera Gold Prometheus is absolutely epic.

    Reviews

Techniques

Sound Advice

People

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    Danton Supple - Producer Engineer

    Danton Supple - Record Producer and Mixer | Podcast

    The MixBus Interview

    Kevin Paul talks to Record Producer and Mixer Danton Supple, who gives a fascinating insight into learning his trade at Sarm and Westside Studios during the 1980s and how he approaches the different roles of Recording Engineer, Producer and Mix Engineer.

    People
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    David Stewart

    Songwriter & Producer

    Since breaking through with BTS’s ‘Dynamite’, David Stewart has been making his mark on modern pop music with hit after hit.

    People .
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    Roland Lamb, CEO of Luminary ROLI

    Inventing the ROLI Seaboard | Podcast

    Redefining Musical Expressiveness

    Roland Lamb talks about the inspiration behind the ROLI Seaboard, the challenges faced when creating a new type of instrument and the three product ranges from ROLI: the Seaboard, Block System and LUMI.

    People
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    Keeping In Touch

    Leader

    If we’re not going to embrace new technologies, if we’re not willing to learn and exploit new tools, what are studios going to be for?

    People
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    Kid Harpoon

    Songwriter & Producer Tom Hull

    The man behind colossal hits for Harry Styles, Miley Cyrus and Florence + the Machine takes a surprisingly old‑school approach to writing and production.

    People .
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    Talkback: Afrodeutsche

    Composer, DJ & Producer Henrietta Smith‑Rolla

    Henrietta Smith‑Rolla, aka Afrodeutsche, bridges musical worlds like few others. The crossing of borders has always been a subject close to home for the British‑Ghanaian‑Russian‑German composer, DJ and producer, whose moniker was chosen after an exploration of her heritage.

    People
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    Why I Love... Sonic Vacation Albums

    Sonal D'Silva

    Since a work trip to the Seychelles, I’ve created a sonic album of every trip I’ve been on and it’s glorious; I can’t believe I didn’t think to do it earlier.

    People
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